Noise is considered ‘unwanted sound’. In Victoria, residential noise rules can be found in the Environment Protection (Residential Noise) Regulations 2008. The noise regulations are governed by the EPA (Environment Protection Authority).
Over time, noise can impact your health and wellbeing, particularly if the noise disrupts sleeping patterns.
While noise regulations are relevant in your everyday life, they are also relevant during unusual or one-off events, such as during the construction of a home. Here are a few common noisy items and their associated noise regulations:
Cars, lawnmowers and other machines with an internal combustion engine can only be operated at your residence between 7am and 9pm on weekdays, and 9am and 8pm on weekends and public holidays.
Of course, you can enter and exit your residence with a car.
Power tools, hammers and compressors, including electric power tools and chainsaws and any other impacting or grinding tools or equipment, can only be used during the same hours as motor vehicles.
Air conditioning and pumps
The air conditioner for your home is, by law, only meant to be in operation between 7am and 10pm.
On weekends and public holidays, the prohibited hours extend until 9am.
The same rules apply for:
- heat pumps,
- swimming pool or spa pumps,
- vacuum cleaners, and
- any water pump that’s not being used to fill a header tank.
Electrified, amplified sound
This includes musical instruments, television, radio, and PA systems. Of course, you can have your television or radio on, but it shouldn’t be audible outside of your residence before 7am on weekdays and after 10pm Sunday to Thursday. On Saturdays, Sundays and public holidays, you should wait until after 9am.
Noise regulations for other electronic equipment
For any other equipment that doesn’t fall into these categories, such as electric gardening equipment, the hours of use should be within 7am and 8pm on weekdays and 9am and 8pm on weekends and public holidays. Of course, this doesn’t apply to things like fridges, personal care items, and food preparation.
It is important to note that outside of these hours, the noises listed are prohibited. Even within these hours, any residential noise may still be considered unreasonable.
Your noise shouldn’t be disruptive to your neighbours, or you’re likely to encounter problems.
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